Progressing with an irregular training availability | Uphill Athlete

Progressing with an irregular training availability

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  • #6666

    Hi there,

    My question is related to progressing (mainly the volume of aerobic) in the context of irregular training time availability.

    For context, I’m starting the Base period of my 3rd year using yearly plans built upon the TFtNA book and the seminar this summer in Chamonix. I’m also a father of 3 & working 90% time. I can almost always fit 2 to 3 training sessions during lunch time on week days but larger slots for bigger workouts tend to be erratic. Some week-ends I can spend a full day in the mountains – where I usually make sure I’m not pushing to much (<=Z2). I can also occasionally take a leave some week day and go climbing. Or wake up really early and go skimo but, again, not every week.

    Given these constraints I’m not sure how to plan my progression. E.g. on first 4 weeks of base, the volume is supposed to be +25%/+25%/+25%/-50%. For sure I can compute that for my lunch time runs and train accordingly. But if I add 1 bigger day it completely changes the progression. Also I cannot do that every week so I find it hard to really follow such a progression.

    If anyone is in a similar situation or if Scott/Steve have ideas on how to make the most of my limited amount of big, erratic training slots ?

    Thanks 🙂

  • Inactive
    Anonymous on #6682

    Thanks for writing into the forum and thanks again for attending the Chamonix workshop. Your’s is a nearly impossible request. There is no way to plan and build progression into a training plan when your available time is erratic. Steve and I work have spent a lot of time trying to come up with a realistic solution to this problem. So far we have not.

    BUT and this is important to understand. While professional athletes and those looking to maximize their own personal potential have to adhere to the types of models of progression and consistency that we advocate, amateurs must always accept some compromise. But those compromises do not need to be the end of fitness gains for you. Keep the major ideas in mind about accumulating volume in aerobic zones. Keep the big picture of strength training (targeting muscular endurance in the end) in mind and forget about a long term progression that is an impossibility in your life. Use short term planning. If you get a chance to go big one week then take it but try to use the next week as a recovery week to let that bog week soak in.

    Neither Steve nor I no longer have time to ‘train’. I have to exercise somewhat similarly to you, erratically and with less progression than I know is ideal. But I can keep my base fitness fairly high and from time to time toss in some big days. It works well enough for us and I think it can work for you too.


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